tv The Last Word MSNBC July 11, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm PDT
which i think officially makes today a good day and should officially make tonight a good night. now it's time for "the last word with lawrence o'donnell." thanks for being with us tonight. have a good one. what was the big surprise when mitt romney spoke to the naacp today? he only got booed three times. >> mitt romney dreams the impossible dream. >> mitt romney went in search of something he had not looked for before. >> if you want a president who will make things better in the african-american community, you are looking at him. >> the african-american vote. >> mission impossible. >> more than 90% of african-americans support the president. >> a high-stakes appearance for mitt romney today at the naacp. >> mitt romney and the naacp. >> i do love that music. i have to tell you. i do love listening to that organ music. >> romney just never connected to his audience. >> things went smoothly until he decided to take on the president's health care plan.
>> i'm going to eliminate every nonessential expensive program i can find. >> the crowd shouted him down with boos. >> that includes obama care, and i'm going to work to reform and save -- [ audience booing ] >> he is the worst republican in the country. >> all of us saying that rick santorum was right. every time someone says something like that, a gay angel gets its wings. >> if you want a president who will make things better in the african-american community, you are looking at him. you take a look. >> i can't! >> i want to give him credit for stepping up into the arena, so to speak. >> there have been republican candidates who have refused to go to the naacp. >> if you understood who i truly am in my part, we would vote for me for president. >> we don't know what you believe, and that's because you repeatedly refuse to tell us. the least self-aware presidential candidate in history spoke to the naacp convention today, where his performance fluctuated between boring and weird.
>> i do not have a hidden agenda. and i submit to you this. if you want a president who will make things better in the african-american community, you are looking at him. [ audience boos ] you take a look. >> take a look. he managed to get booed only three times in the 24-minute speech. and that was only because his handlers were not smart enough to adjust the applause lines that always work with republican audiences. >> if our goal is jobs, we have to stop spending over $1 trillion more than we take in every year. and so -- and so to do that, i'm going to the eliminate every nonessential expensive program i can find. that includes obama care, and i'm going to work to reform and save -- [ audience booing ]
>> there he is, the worst reader of audience reaction in political history, he actually told fox news, he thought he was a big hit with the naacp. >> i spoke with a number of african-american leaders after the event, and they said, you know, a lot of folks don't want to say they're not going to be voting for barack obama, but they're disappointed in his lack of policies to improve our schools, disappointed in urban policy, disappointed in the economy. 14.4% rate of unemployment among african-americans. so i expect to get african-american votes. >> joining me now, mark thompson, host of "make it plain" on sirius xm radio. he was in the room today for the romney speech. toure, a co-host of "the cycle" on msnbc and the author of "who's afraid of post-blackness?"
and goldie taylor, managing editor of the goldie taylor project and a contribute to the grio.com, which is part of msnbc news. mark thompson, tell me what the reaction was in the room. >> well, of course, everyone was polite, and as always, lawrence, thanks for having me. it's a tradition of the naacp, when it has this convention during a presidential election year, to invite both a democratic nominee and the republican nominee. and mitt romney was accepting, he did come. and it was very polite, up until the point, of course, when he mentioned obama care. and to many in the audience, obama care itself is still somewhat of a slur. that's not the name of the program. i know oftentimes as pundits, we use it loosely, but some people feel that's a negative term, even a pejorative term, and he was booed. he was actually applauded when he first came out. he got some other rounds of applause, because the -- and these are the very black leaders he claimed to have talked to on fox tonight.
he brought about 20 black republicans with him into the room, and they kind of served as applauders for his applause lines. it was bizarre. i think a term you used was weird. he made several of the statements that were really strange. he even made other statements that many of us thought were disrespectful. for example, he talked about preserving traditional marriage, to an organization that most recently, this is the oldest civil rights organization in the country, most recently just endorsed marriage equality. he made a big pitch for charter schools to an organization where there's really no consensus about that. there are a lot of communities, especially in new york, the new york state conference and the naacp is dealing with a proliferation of charter schools, a many communities are, around the country. so that was inappropriate. he also tied that in to his
ongoing attack against unions and teachers' unions. he was even, i think many of us found him and many in the audience found him to be paternalistic in saying he would be the best president for the african-american community. that's something barack obama has never even said, the first african-american president. i think that was really a very arrogant statement for him to make. and then, lawrence, this might have been a small thing, but it's important for people to understand. you cannot be culturally ignorant. he singled out one african-american who came with the 20 in his entourage as an african-american that was in his kitchen cabinet in massachusetts, and he promised that he would remain in his kitchen cabinet if he was in the white house. to talk about being in the kitchen and not talk about an african-american actually being in your cabinet is really not a good metaphor to use with african-americans. >> goldie taylor, you're a southerner, you know the
southern strategy that republicans have used since nixon and started a little bit before that. where there's actually an almost-overt sometimes appeal to racial and racist voting. and tell me, goldie, if i'm being too cynical, to think that the romney campaign actually went in that room today with the hope of getting booed, at least three times, because they want the video of their candidate being booed by the naacp to play in certain racist precincts where that will actually help them? >> i don't think you're being too cynical at all. as, you know, our friend toure said earlier today, you know, i truly believe that mitt romney went into that room, not to speak to the naacp, but to speak to his base. he still has a large base of conservative voters that he has to convince that he's one of them.
and given his switching stance on issues, they just don't trust him. so he looked to the naacp to give him some kind of credibility. if he really intended to speak to this venerable civil rights organization, the oldest in our country, then he might have walked into the room and talked about how we fix basic public education, because we know education disrupts poverty. if he intended, i think, to speak to the naacp, then maybe he would have gone into the room to repudiate some of the attacks on, you know, people who want to vote in this country. people who are legally able to vote in this country, and some of the very draconian laws that have come to grow to keep, you know, everyday citizens from the polls, who happen to skew democratic. the elderly, young college students, you know, people who are poor, who don't have access readily to some of the i.d.s that they are looking for today. maybe we would have spoken to these issues.
instead, as mark thompson said, he was highly paternalistic. he used a word like "obama care," which is a derisive term for the affordable care act. if he was truly interested in speaking to the naacp, then he would have done that. but i'll tell you this, he said we didn't know his heart and maybe we would vote for him if we did. well, we learned his heart tonight, because he left that speech and went to a fund-raiser and said out loud, and i quote, "if all they're looking for is more free government stuff, they should vote for the other guy." that tells me all i need to know now about mitt romney, who at first i believed was just disconnected. now i know his problem is much bigger than that. >> toure, i want us to listen to a small clip of romney talking about the first african-american president. >> someone had told us in the 1950s or 1960s that a black
citizen would serve as the 44th of the united states, we would have been proud and many would have been surprised. >> toure, he would have been really surprised, because at that time, as you've pointed out, in his religion, black men were not allowed to become simply priests. and so it would have been even more shocking and surprising to say to him, in the 1960s, a black citizen might become the president of the mormon church. that's even more far fetched. >> right, that would have been impossible at that point. of course, at that point, it would have been functionally impossible in the united states. when you take me back to the '60s, you may me think about how progressive mr. george romney was. george romney marched with civil right activists in 1963. he worked in nixon's department of housing and urban development as secretary to fight housing discrimination, right?
he's rejecting barry goldwater, right, because he's not progressive enough. because he's too racist. so it's not trickling down to the son, for some reason. i mean, i think that this is a classic republican strategy that we saw today. using black people to score points with white people, as we've said already, the real audience was not in the room. he's talking to white people -- >> via television. >> that would be why he didn't adjust the republican boilerplate in the speech. it's a real easy thing to do. in no speech do you include every single one of your policy items. he could have left those out with, but those were left in there deliberately. >> he wants to get booed. it makes him either look tough and strong to the white people watching or make him look sympathetic to the white people watching. he's speaking to the independents and as goldie said, to the base. if he really wanted to speak to black people, the job creator, as he call himself, could have talked about 14.4% unemployment, double the white average.
what are you going to do about that? if you want to speak to some of the black people in the room and win some of those votes. but the line that really jumped out at me, if you understand who i truly am in my heart. isn't that the kind of thing you hear people say when they're accused of being racist, and they're trying to make an apology. well, i'm not racist in my heart, my mouth moved wrong, but my heart is clean. and he's not saying he's racist, but he's saying the republican party has been racist, but i am not. >> and goldie, if he's going to bring up his heart and what is secretly in his heart, he could have spent the rest of the speech telling us what's in his heart. >> he could have told us what was in his heart. he could have rolled up his sleeves and gone into african-american communities would cameras, without handlers to really understand where people are in their daily lives, what their challenges are. to talk about meaningful and workingful solutions. but at the end of the day, i think we learned a lot about his heart today.
>> mark thompson, toure, and goldie taylor, thank you very much for joining me tonight. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> thank you. coming up, we'll have more on mitt romney at the naacp. michael eric dyson will join us. and breaking news, house republicans voted yet again to repeal the affordable care act. krystal ball and karen finney will join me on that. and on what michelle obama's doing on the campaign trail. and last night we told you that your cell phone was spying on you and that law enforcement could get information without a warrant. tonight, we'll tell you what can be learned about you from the data that your cell phone is producing. and in the "rewrite," the love/hate relationship between the religious right and. [ female announcer ] the power of green coffee extract is now in our new starbucks refreshers™ -- a breakthrough in natural energy. made with real fruit, starbucks refreshers™ are delicious low calorie drinks you can feel good about. ♪
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>> well, why isn't it possible to communicate that, then? of course mitt romney revealed nothing of who he truly is in his heart. and if there is one thing that the naacp would have liked to know today about mitt romney, it is exactly that. what's in his heart. they knew his policy positions before he walked in the room, and what they didn't really know is who he really is, and they still don't know that. and that has left an opening for team obama to try to provide a window into the heart or heartlessness of mitt romney. >> out of the blue one day, we were told to build a 30-foot stage. gathered the guys and we built that 30-foot stage, not knowing what it was for. just days later, all three shifts were told to assemble in the warehouse. a group of people walked out on that stage and told us that the plant is now closed and all of you are fired.
i looked both ways, i looked at the crowd, and we all just lost our jobs. we don't have any income. mitt romney made over $100 million by shutting down our plant and devastated our lives. turns out that when we built that stage, it was like building my own coffin. and it just made me sick. >> priorities usa action is responsible for the content of this advertising. >> joining me now, msnbc political analyst, professor michael eric dyson of georgetown university and howard fineman, "huffington post" editorial director. michael, these words fascinate me. mitt romney said, "if it were possible to fully communicate what i believe is in the real enduring best interest of african-american families, you would vote for me." he's suggesting there that for
some reason, it is not possible to communicate this. why? because that audience wouldn't understand it? why can't he communicate it? >> i mean, one of the few audiences that really would understand it, because they have an old negro spiritual that says, i want to be a christian in my heart. so here's a guy who's speaking heart language to people who understand heart language, and yet you don't articulate, you don't forthcome. and i think the problem here is that it was a speech that was calculated as goldie taylor said and as toure said, for a broader audience. but he missed a golden opportunity to really win over, by a few percentage points, some african-american people who would have seen him as reasonable, who would have seen him as a person who was willing to reach out beyond the confines and conventions of his own conservative party, to really address the issues of african-american people. as you said, the public policy issues were well vetted. what we needed to understand from him is, what do you feel? how do you identify? what are the empathetic nodes and moments of your life?
and we heard nothing. >> howard fineman, what was team romney trying to accomplish there today? >> well, first, i want to say that i haven't heard mitt romney discuss any nodes in moments of his life, and that's partly because his whole strategy in this campaign is to disappear. sometimes i think he would do best by depositing himself in a swiss bank account and disappearing. at least that's their strategy. their strategy is to make mitt romney all but disappear and try to put all the focus on president obama. so in that sense, this is of a piece with everything else he's done in the campaign. he hasn't talked about his faith, he doesn't really want to do that. he doesn't really want to talk about his feelings. that's not something he does. he has not spelled out, in many details, most of what his policy positions are. it's as though he's invisible and wants to keep the focus on the president. but i agree he missed an opportunity here. i think what the romney campaign
wanted and what they thought they'd get was a triple play out of this. by showing up, by going to the naacp, he might get some credit, although he took a lot of it away with the use of the word "obama care," which is a loaded word. with some independent white voters in suburbs, they may say, look, they went to the naacp, isn't that nice? but there are other parts of the white voting community, the conservative party in the south, that have their doubts about mitt romney as a conservative, who, sadly, perhaps, will have their views strengthened about him as a conservative by watching him being booed by that audience. >> right. >> and i think, i think you said earlier, lawrence, that this is a good with a tin ear to his audience. as he said later, he knew, in advance, that he was going to be booed. by using the word "obama care," they can't be that dumb in the romney campaign that they didn't know that that was a red flag.
and i think what they told him to do was stand there and let the boos roll, which is precisely what happened. >> michael, forget political punditry, forget election analysis. tell me what it felt like for you, as a black man in america, listening to that speech today. >> well, look, on the one hand, i wanted to give him credit, and i did, for showing up, because his, you know, republican predecessor, george w. bush, just at the end, said, i'm not going to go, and forbade his schedulers to move him through to the protocols of showing up at the big, black conventions. but on the other hand, i thought, my god, i have to be grateful that you would take me seriously as a citizen. that i have somehow proved to be outside the arc and literally the pale and pigment of the larger american political makeup that somehow you have to condescend, and i should be grateful that you took me seriously, as a voting
constituency, as a human being? and i thought, also, about all of the meanings of race that circulate around mitt romney. the fact that as a mormon, his own particular region had a racial animus and a hostility towards african-american people. and i remember mormons coming to my door, telli me about the cursing of a certain kind of black lineage, but despite that, we could serve in some kind of subsection of a junior capacity, a junior associate, and also ran. and so i thought about that. but the fact that he was moving forward. but he wasn't really able to cut through all of the red tape. you know, howard fineman talks about the fact that this is -- he's been a cipher, and that's what they want. but the problem is, he says, if you knew it was in my heart. well, we don't know. why don't you tell us. you invite you to interrogate us, invite us to ask what's there, and you invite us to see the vapidity, the emptiness, the inability to express fundamental truths and beliefs that can move us. i mean, you don't have to be a rapper to say, how can i move
the crowd? you want to move the crowd. as a political figure who arcticlates a vision that not only speaks to us in a cerebral capacity, but from human being to human being, and i think he missed that opportunity to do so, and i felt he was a person who missed it. >> howard, i think this is a very important point that howard just made, the fact that anyone should be grateful in some sense that mitt romney would acknowledge them as american voters and worthy of being spoken to. but this is the same person who as governor of massachusetts spent four years in an office at the top of beacon hill, the governor's office in boston, without ever once, ever once having a meeting there with the naacp. >> yeah, and also, and also, lawrence, moving to change the affirmative action office and rules in massachusetts in a way that was controversial. it certainly wasn't at the top of his agenda. one thing that strikes me here
is i've been through this movie before to some extent, lawrence, and so have you. with the history of the republican party, this is now the second presidential candidate that i've heard invoking the civil rights sensitivities of his father. george w. bush did it to some extent with george h.w. bush, who famously, you know, had at least some minimal civil rights involved. now he did it with george romney. we learned yet today more about george romney, than we did about mitt romney the son. >> michael, there has been a lot of talk today about, you've got to give him credit for showing up. i don't think you do. you give him credit for speaking to the american voter, who are assembled at this convention? >> you know, chris rock was famous for saying about black people, he was being self-critical. he says, some black men want to get credit for things you should do, like taking care of my kids. you're the highest political candidate in the land. are we supposed to give you credit for showing up? i don't think so.
coming up, michelle obama is back on the campaign trail. karen finney and krystal ball are here to talk about it. and why you should be very worried about what cell phone data is available to the police. they know where you are every minute you've got that little thing in your pocket. and in the "rewrite," it's the right-wing religious nuts versus google. good luck with that one. [ male announcer ] summer is here. and so too is the summer event. now get an incredible offer on the powerful c250 sport sedan. but hurry before this opportunity...disappears. the mercedes-benz summer event ends july 31st.
today was episode 33 of repeal the affordable care act in the house of representatives. and yesterday michelle obama went back on the campaign trail, connecting with americans who are struggling with this economy. krystal ball and karen finney will join me on those subjects. and later, the secrets your cell phone can reveal about you, your cell phone is revealing those secrets to your cell phone carrier. you've got to worry about this. we're going to have an expert tell us exactly what's happening to all that data. and in the "rewrite" tonight, some right-wing conservative religious fanatics in this country have decided it is time to boycott google. the little problem there being that studies show that religious conservatives consume more internet porn than the rest of us and how are they going to
the american people want us to create jobs, that's what we should be using this time on the floor for. not on this useless bill to nowhere. bill to nowhere that does serious damage to the health and economic well-being of america's families. >> in the spotlight tonight, depending on how you count it, today marked either the 31st or the 33rd time the house of representatives voted to repeal the president's health care law. and for the 30-something time, the repeal passed. this time with 244 yeas, 145 nays, five democrats voted with republicans for the repeal. the bill will now move to the senate, where it will take its place beside the 30 other bills that are just being ignore there had. joining me now, cohost of nbc's "the cycle," krystal ball and karen finney, former dnc communications director and political analyst. krystal, this has to be the last one.
no, it has to! they can't -- they just did this because, you know, they felt like wicked bad, you know, when the supreme court ruled against them on this thing. and they go, let's do that one more time. >> the 33rd time's a charm, right? >> we're done. we're done. >> well, i do think that the politics of this are shifting. and we did have a new "washington post" poll out saying that now it's tied, how voters feel about the health care law. 47-47. which is different. it used to be much more in favor of repeal. so that has changed. i also think now we're getting into a zone where people are actually starting to learn about some of the benefits that they are getting or will get from the law. and it's a much different deal to say, you are getting this thing now and we want to take it away from you. so, for example, you have the dccc actually putting up some ads, touting the benefits of the affordable care act, as opposed to in 2010, when democrats very much, you know, as i was running
for congress at this time, so i saw this across the country, democrats very much ran away from that bill, which sent a signal to the american public, here they passed this bill, and even the people who passed it don't want to talk about it. >> now, the most popular campaigner out there, in this campaign season, is, of course, michelle obama. she's got the highest poll numbers of anyone, and she went to florida and continued to emphasize that her -- that she and her husband and their families know what economic struggle feels like. let's listen to that. >> my father was a blue-collar city worker. he worked at the city water plant his entire life. and my family lived in a little bitty apartment on the south side of chicago. and growing up -- i know we've got some south siders here. and growing up, i saw how my parents saved and sacrificed and
poured everything they had into me and my brother. they held us to the same high standard of excellence because they wanted us to both have the kind of education they could only dream of. how many people can relate to that? >> karen finney, after the week of the romney clan up there on the lake, in the big speedboat, on the jet skis with the repeated photographs of the multi-million-dollar gigantic lakeside mansion that they have up there, these stories have, i think, a different resonance now than they did four years ago. and in fact, i don't remember the first lady getting into that kind of specificity four years ago. >> you know, actually, lawrence, she did. because, remember, her father also suffers from a medical condition, i believe it was ms, and so, i mean, they did talk about it some, but i think part
of what's changed, and linda lake has talked about this, a great democratic pollster, that part of what people want to know now is, do you understand what i'm going through? do you -- can i trust you to understand what it's like to be a middle class person in this country, trying, working hard every day, trying to figure out how to send my kids to college, worrying about my health care, and think about just the contrast between the way, also in tone, michelle was talking to that audience and connecting, and the way, i mean, there's so much wrong with what mitt romney said at the end of the naacp audience. but specifically on obama care, how dare he go into a room full of people who are one of the communities in this country, communities of color, who rely on the services that obama care is now going to provide, and say, i'm going to take it away and not think that he has to have some kind of response to, and here's what i'm going to do instead. so this idea of, who do you trust, and connecting with people, that's really what michelle taps into. >> let's listen to some more of michelle obama, because i think she's a fascinating political
speaker, in that it's always fresh. it's interesting, karen, that you've heard some of these things before. i haven't, and i've heard her speak a lot, but not as much as you have. and she doesn't work with a prompter and she seems to be speaking from the heart, the heart that mitt romney can't find in himself. >> that he has. >> hey, it's very powerful stuff. let's listen to her talking about the president. >> barack obama is the son of a single mother, who struggled to put herself through school and pay the bills. barack is the grandson of a woman who woke up before dawn every day to catch a bus to her job at the bank. and even though barack's grandmother was good at her job and helped support her family, like so many women, she hit that glass ceiling and watched men no more qualified than she was, men she'd actually trained be promoted up the ladder ahead of her. just understand that your president, barack obama, knows what it means when a family struggles.
>> karen, and krystal, there's no politics in that. that's just a personal story. >> it's the proud wife. and what i would underscore here is, michelle obama and the president are the personification of the american dream. and mitt romney and ann romney, in a lot of ways, are the personification of the america that we're going to become, where the rich and the powerful just gain more wealth and more power. >> karen -- go ahead. >> i was just going to say, and tactically speaking, some of the other places you'll see michelle pop up on the campaign trail, and she actually did an event with a website that specifically targets latina mothers. so this idea of connecting with women on the struggles that women face. and again, because african-american women, that was the largest group that voted for barack obama. we happen to be 52% of the voting population. so connecting with women as well and saying, this is a president who understands what women are going through, whether you're working in the home or outside of the home. >> karen finney and krystal
ball, thank you both very much for joining me tonight. >> thanks, lawrence. coming up, why an anti-gay group wants to boycott google and why they just can't quit google. that's in the "rewrite." and police are collecting enormous amounts of data from your cell phone and millions of cell phones around the country. we don't know what they're doing it. we'll have a follow-up on last night's report. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 let's talk about fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 there are atm fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 account service fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 and the most dreaded fees of all, hidden fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 at charles schwab, you won't pay fees on top of fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no monthly account service fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no hidden fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 and we rebate every atm fee. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 so talk to chuck tdd# 1-800-345-2550 because when it comes to talking, there is no fee.
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exxon and mobil. yesterday an anti-gay group threatened to boycott google. and today, they realized they just can't quit google. that's next in the "rewrite." delivering mail, medicine and packages. yet the house is considering a bill to close thousands of offices, slash service and layoff over 100,000 workers. the postal service is recording financial losses, but not for reasons you might think. the problem ? a burden no other agency or company bears. a 2006 law that drains $5 billion a year from post office revenue while the postal service is forced to overpay billions more into federal accounts.
it's our most innovative altima ever. ♪ in tonight's "rewrite," the love/hate relationship between right-wing religious fanatics and porn. the american family association, which is dedicated to making sure gay people cannot have families, is talking boycott once again, even though their record on boycotting companies that they think are just too gay friendly, isn't so great. they launched a boycott of home depot after home depot began participating in gay pride festivals around the country. and for fiscal year 2011, the first full year of the american family association's boycott of home depot, home depot's earnings increased 16% to $3.8 billion, beating all analysts' predictions. yesterday on american family
association radio, buster wilson started talking about a new boycott. the boycott i really, really want to see. >> google has launched a worldwide push for gay rights now. google has launched a campaign for gay rights called legalize love initiative. it's to promote human rights and tackle employment discriminations in countries with anti-gay laws on the books. the campaign's first two target countries are poland, which does not recognize same-sex couple, and singapore, which criminalizes gay sex. legalized love will eventually spread to every country where the search engine giant has offices, and certainly that will involve the united states. i said that i did not want to support any efforts like this and, in fact, we are a part of boycotting efforts similar to this, with other businesses. this is going to be a hard one for a lot of us.
a lot of us are so integrated into google and google products, this is going to be a tough one. it's more than just a search engine. many of us have android phones. the android system is a google product. gmail and all those kinds of things, youtube and all those other things. it's not just the search engine, so this one's going to be tough. this is going to be one of those situations where i guess we'll test the meat of our convictions. google, out there pushing for same-sex equality. >> hmm, buster wilson wants to test the meat, and he knows it's going to be tough. and he still, still wants to test the meat. oh, yeah. this one's going to be really, really hard, because like buster says -- >> a lot of us are so integrated into google. >> how integrated?
well, let's take a look at internet porn as an example. a harvard business school study of two years of credit card data of internet porn purchases, and let me just say right here, i am officially way out of my depth. i, personally, don't know anything about internet porn purchases. i mean, seriously. paying for it? who does that? well, according to the study, conservatives are the biggest porn purchasers in america. religious conservatives, the states that consume the most porn tend to be more conservative and more religious. the states with the biggest per capita -- the single state with the biggest per capita subscriptions of online porn is utah. eight of the top ten porn-consuming states voted republican in the last presidential election. the states that have passed laws
banning same-sex marriage have 11% more porn subscriber freaks who pay for it than states that haven't passed laws banning same-sex marriage. states where a majority of the residents agree with the statement, i have old-fashioned values about family and marriage, buy more porn online. states where a majority of residents agree with the statement, aids might be god's punishment for immoral sexual behavior, buy more porn online. and, of course, pretty much everyone buying that porn finds the porn they want to buy through google. and so, yeah, a boycott of google is going to be really tough for religious conservatives. >> i guess we'll test the meat of our convictions. >> turns out after thinking
about testing the meat for a day, buster wilson is now afraid of how big temptation the meat is for even the religious right-wing fanatics of the american family association. >> you have no idea how bad it gets! >> and so today, on the buster blog, which is not a gay porn site, not yet, anyway, buster wilson backed down. "i was speaking on my show about how horrible it is that companies like google, like home depot and others use their powerful influence in our communities to push the gay agenda upon the rest of us, like pushing for homosexual marriage, demanding special designations and rights for them simply because of their preferred sexual lifestyles. i stated that it would be tough for someone like me to choose to not be supportive of someone like google, because i am so intertwined with google products.
but i never called for a google boycott." later buster tweeted from his android phone, which is a google product, that he was not calling for a boycott and just wants everyone to, quote, move on. poor buster. poor, poor buster. he just got way too intertwined with google, and he thinks of google as a person now. he just said, "it would be tough for someone like me to choose not to be supportive of someone like google, because i am so intertwined with google." "someone like google"? oh, boy. buster's got it bad.
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what your provider knows about you should scare you. several times a minute your cell phone tells your wireless carrier where you are. your wireless carrier knows who you've been talking to, who you've been texting, and your wireless carrier will automatically hand that over to the police, mostly without a warrant.
a federal appeals court found that just the location data that wireless companies have can tell whether you, quote, are a weekly churchgoer, a heavy drinker, a regular at the gym, an unfaithful husband, an outpatient receiving medical treatment, an associate of particular individuals or political groups, and not just one such fact about a person, all such facts. the american civil liberties union is worried about what's happening to this information. congressman ed markey was here last night, reporting on his investigation on cell phone data, and joining me now is sam biddle, senior staff right for gizmodo. sam, there's so many strange things about this, including that we don't know how long cell phone companies keep this data. the aclu reports that the problem is cell phone companies refuse to reveal how long they keep it, mostly. sprint says they keep it for 18 to 24 months.
at&t says they've been holding on it for indefinitely. >> and we have to take them at their word when they say it's only been so long. and like you said, there's no end date. so they're holding on to this stuff really until they're forced to delete it. >> and it's kind of, they're getting it within what used to be their wiretap powers. but they're getting it without warrants, most of the police departments they ask for it, they just hand it over. >> right. if a police agency comes and says there's some sort of danger or threat, which is such a nebulous criterion to begin with, they hand it right over. >> so for that to be a legitimate inquiry, you're trusting the police officer who's actually doing it. you're trusting that the police officer isn't just trying to find out what his girlfriend has been up to. and there's nothing to prevent that. >> no, nothing. once it's in the hands of the police, it's purely up to faith.
and the amount you could infer from that data is immense. >> what are the kinds of things that someone working in a police department or at a wireless company, who for their own interests, never mind legitimate legal interests, what are the kinds of mischief they can get up to with that data? >> you can find out someone's employer, you can get into their e-mail accounts. think about how many people's passwords are some variant of some personal bit of information. if you -- >> mother's maiden name. >> right, exactly. if you say, oh, i lost my password, they might say, what's the name of your pet, you can find that from someone's cell phone if you pry for five minutes. >> and how -- given that -- i think most people aren't worried about what police find out about them, but the fact that this is going out there and that there are these massive data collections going on means they don't know about them. >> last summer, there were a string of hacking attacks, successful ones, against local police agencies. they were rape targets and this